Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Comparatively Speaking

One day, I handed my then 4 year old grandson, Payson, a bat, a ball and a mit. I instructed him to put the bat over his shoulder, then I would hang the mit onto the bat, behind him. Then I placed the ball in his other hand. Once that was done, I told him to walk away from me so I could a picture of him from the back. He gave me this strange look, thrust out his bottom lip and dumped the bat, ball and mit to the ground, slumped his shoulder, dropped his head and began to sulk.

That wasn't quite what I had in mind but it was perfect and I snapped the picture. The next day I borrowed my neighbors ceramic dog, pulled out the paints and canvas and began a the painting that was better than what I had first envisioned. It was perfect. I added broken glass, left out the ball and the painting told it's own story of a little, boy, who accidently hit his ball through the neighbor's window.

Comparatively speaking, that's rather like writing a novel. You start out with what you think is a cool idea and somewhere along with way something happens to change what was first intended, and you find that the accident that changed the path of the novel was amazing and your characters begin to tell their own story. You just add the props.

Comparatively speaking, isn't that the way life is, as well? We start out with an idea and something happens along the way to change that idea and amazing things begin to happen. We just have to add the right props to give our life beauty and promise.

Have a great day


MeganRebekah said...

I love this story! It's such a perfect example of the writing process (including a little bit of whining and pouting!) and I love the picture you painted.

Sharon Cohen said...

What a well written, enjoyable and insightful post.

I think I would hang a copy of this painting above my desk to remind me that the "accidents" are sometimes the best course correction we are ever given.


You are right on with human nature and how we try to put our ideas in a box. When our ideas take on their own agenda and get out of the box, we panic. But lo and behold, most often it turns out for the better. Love the post.

Steve said...

I love the concept of letting the story tell itsself. Provide the characters with a dilema or a tragedy, or a question, and see what happens.